Illinois Flash Index Reaches New Post-Recession High
By Jim Meadows
The Flash Index for January puts the Illinois economy at its highest level of growth in nearly seven years.
University of Illinois economist Fred Giertz says the Index is now at 107.2, after hovering at 107.0 for a few months. That’s well above 100, the Index’s dividing line between growth and decline. Giertz says the state economy continues to grow at a slow but steady pace. And he says it’s growing more slowly than the national economy, which is also at risk of slowing down.
“We started the year with a lot of optimism about the economy', explains Giertz. "And the last quarter of 2013 was pretty strong. But … in the month of January, the stock market didn’t do well. And there’s concern about foreign markets. So, I mean, still optimistic, but probably a little bit more guarded than 2 or 3 weeks ago.”
Giertz says there’s no guarantee that market problems will spill over into the larger economy.
The Flash Index is compiled from Illinois tax receipts. Giertz says January corporate tax receipts were up strongly from a year ago, while sales tax receipts were up 3% and individual income tax receipts were down slightly.